Unarguably, corruption stands, as a cog in the wheel of progress in most parts of the world today.
It is, however, prominent in many developing countries,especially, in Africa, where government officials and agencies, are notorious for financial misappropriation.
Coming down to Nigeria, popularly, referred to, as the giant of Africa, a phrase, which appears to be over flogged, as the thoughts of the statement does not match the reality on ground.
Since the discovery of crude oil in Nigeria, over 60 years ago, one would have thought that, Nigeria would have moved beyond the stage of developing, to being a developed nation.
Competing with the superpowers of this world, in terms of national wealth and human capacity development.
This has, clearly, not been the case, as the revenue generated, from the sale of crude oil has not translated, to the expectations of an oil-producing country.
Maybe, this is going too far. How about the internally generated revenue, meant to be earned as proceeds to the Federal government?
Due to multiple channels of payments available to the Federal government, the tendencies for financial misappropriation appears too high and there exists difficulty in blocking the loopholes.
Soon enough, the government realized that, if it does not take urgent steps in addressing the issue, sooner, or, later, the nation might run into financial chaos, making life more unbearable to the masses.
In 2012, the Federal government proposed a financial policy, which was later implemented in 2015.
What was this policy? This is, what today, is known as, the Treasury Single Account, (TSA), introduced, to consolidate, all the inflows from all government agencies, into one main account, at the Central Bank of Nigeria.
The implementation of the Treasury Single Account, eventually, rested on the shoulders of a foremost, financial technology inclined company, SystemSpecs, which developed a financial application called, Remita.
Remita, is an integrated electronic payments and collections platform, which has actually enhanced the full implementation of the Treasury Single Account, thus, blocking out series of financial misappropriation.
Over the years, the control and management of the Federal government’s financial resources, have simply, relied on the current banking system, which, over time, appears to be inefficient in deploying these duties.
For so long a time, the country has employed a system of fragments, in managing receipts and payments belonging to the government.
Prior to this the International Monetary Fund, (IMF), has duly recommended that, countries facing the challenges of financial misappropriation, at the government level, should establish a unified system, that will ensure that, all government funds, are deposited into one account.
The IMF, pushed for this agenda, as it would cause a reduction in borrowing cost, enable credit extension and bring about, an increase, in the government’s fiscal policies.
This was a major trigger, to the introduction of the TSA. The IMF saw the need and called for its urgent implementation, but the development of Remita by SystemSpecs, has made this implementation possible, as, only an integrated system, can efficiently allow the recommendation of the IMF.
Despite Remita, not been a traditional banking system for financial services, the implementation of the TSA, got support from the bankers’ committee.
A clear indication, that the Fintech application, is the solution to solving the challenges of financial misappropriation, within government agencies.
Over time, through Remita, the TSA initiative has enhanced the Federal government, to take full charge of, over 3 trillion Naira of its cash assets, as in the first quarter of 2016.
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